Francesca Abbate, Department Chair
Francesca Abbate | Associate Professor and Chair of English | B.A., Beloit College; Ph.D., University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee | email | WAC 105 | office: 363-2029
Professor Abbate teaches courses in creative writing, poetry, writing from art, and college writing. A graduate of Beloit College, with a major in creative writing, Professor Abbate completed a master of fine arts in poetry at the University of Montana and completed her doctorate at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. Her poetry has appeared in numerous publications and literary journals, including Elm, Field, The Iowa Review, The Journal, Poetry, and NEO. Her book Troy, Unincorporated is now out with the University of Chicago Press. Troy, Unincorporated is a poetic retelling of Chaucer's Troilus and Criseyde set in Southeastern Wisconsin. It was also a semifinalist for the 2010 Walt Whitman Award and a finalist for the Four Way Books Intro Prize.
Christina Clancy | Visiting Assistant Professor of English | B.A.,The University of Minnesota; Ph.D., University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee | email | Writing Center 106| office: 363-2195
Professor Christi Clancy specializes in suburban literature, eco-criticism, and creative writing pedagogy. Her work has twice been nominated for the Pushcart Prize and has appeared in Glimmer Train Stories and many other publications, including, most recently, the New York Times. Clancy’s novel and creative dissertation addresses issues of spatial proximity, identity, and sense of place. She has also taught courses of her own design in creative writing, animated writing, composition, literature, and literary theory, including a class on creative adaptation titled “From the Short Story to the Big Screen” and a number of expository writing courses, on multidisciplinary topics such as climate change, suburban sprawl, and the American consumer. Clancy has served as Associate Producer of the Poetry Everywhere Project at UW Milwaukee and, before graduate school, worked as a communications manager and marketing specialist.
Jean Franzino | Visiting Assistant Professor of English | B.A., University of Michigan; Ph.D., University of Virginia | email | WAC 108 | office: 363-2048
Jean Franzino teaches courses in American literature and culture and literature and social identity. She is particularly interested in the capacity of literature to contest or reinforce categories of race, gender, and disability. Professor Franzino’s work has appeared or is forthcoming in American Quarterly and Disability Studies Quarterly. Her current research projects concern how the U.S. “freak show” influenced literary, popular, and political discourses on slavery and abolition, and how writings from the U.S. Civil War shaped emergent formulations of disabled identity. Professor Franzino’s work has been supported by the American Antiquarian Society and the National Endowment for the Humanities. In 2016, she was named an Irving K. Zola Emerging Scholar in Disability Studies by the Society for Disability Studies.
Chris Fink | Professor of English | B.A., Augustana College; Ph.D., University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee | email | WAC 205-B | office: 363-2681
Professor Fink specializes in fiction writing and teaches courses in creative writing, literature and journalism. He serves as editor for the Beloit Fiction Journal and coordinates the Mackey Chair in Creative Writing. His book of stories Farmer's Almanac: A Work of Fiction came out in the spring of 2013 from Emergency Press. Since 2000, he has published more than twenty five stories and essays at various journals, including Alaska Quarterly Review, The Cream City Review, Hayden’s Ferry Review, Malahat Review North Dakota Quarterly, Other Voices, The Pinch, South Dakota Review and others.
He was a founding faculty member of the MFA program at San Jose State University, where he taught for five years and edited Reed Magazine. He is a recipient of the 2003 Silicon Valley Artist’s Grant, and founder of the John Steinbeck Award for the Short Story.
Shawn Gillen | Professor of English | B.A., St. John's University; Ph.D., University of Minnesota | email | WAC 101 | office: 363-2309
Professor Gillen teaches courses in creative writing, American Literature, critical theory, and journalism. He chairs Beloit's journalism minor. Professor Gillen served as a visiting professor and research fellow at the University of Glasgow and is a scholar-in-residence at the Newberry Library in Chicago. He has written a collection of personal essays and autobiographical fiction, excerpts of which appeared in the Colorado Review and the North Atlantic Review. He has recently published scholarly essays on Captain America, J. M. Synge, Henry James, and Edith Wharton. His fiction, music criticism, and journalism have appeared in a variety of publications, and he has worked for several literary journals and newspapers, such as City Pages in Minneapolis-St. Paul and the Isthmus, a newspaper in Madison, Wisconsin. His other interests include popular music and its relation to literature, travel writing, and cyberculture. -On sabbatical 2014_15 academic year.
Tamara Ketabgian | Professor of English | B.A., Harvard University; Ph.D., Princeton | email | WAC 208 | office: 363-2682
Professor Ketabgian teaches courses on nineteenth-century British literature and culture, critical theory, science fiction, the Enlightenment, the history of technology, and "steampunk" as a cultural movement. She has received fellowships from the American Philosophical Society, the American Council of Learned Societies, and the National Endowment for the Humanities (declined), and has published articles in Victorian Studies, Women's Writing, and various collections. In 2005, the North American Victorian Studies Association awarded her the Donald Gray Prize (honorable mention) for the best essay in Victorian studies. Her book, The Lives of Machines: The Industrial Imaginary in Victorian Literature and Culture (2011) was published by the University of Michigan Press and shortlisted for the annual book prize of the British Society for Literature and Science. Her new research concentrates on natural theology, science fiction, and fantasies of technological design and spiritual intelligence from Charles Babbage to the present.
Charles Lewis | Professor of English and Director of the Writing Program | B.A., Ph.D., University of Minnesota | email | 635 College St. | office: 363-2065
Professor Chuck Lewis teaches writing and literature, and he directs Beloit College's writing program and writing center. Most of his published scholarship focuses on the novel, although his teaching interests include interdisciplinary approaches to literature, the relationship between writing and other modes of communication such as photography, and creative writing. His publications include A Coincidence of Wants: The Novel and Neoclassical Economics (Garland, 2000), "Babbled Slander Where the Paler Shades Dwell: Reading Race in The Great Gatsby and Passing" (2007), "Philip Roth's The Plot Against America as 9/11 Prosthesis" (2009), "Map My Ride: Scaling Frank Norris's The Octopus by Bicycle" (2014), and “Photographing the Painted Landscape: Photo-ekphrasis in The Rise of Silas Lapham” (2017). Other articles and his fiction have also appeared in Arizona Quarterly, Salmagundi, Computers and Composition, Dreiser Studies, and Mpls./ St. Paul Magazine. Professor Lewis has also taught at Westminster College in Missouri and the University of Minnesota. His favorite aspect of teaching at Beloit is the rewarding opportunity here to offer and receive something valuable and interesting every day.
Diane Lichtenstein | Professor of English | B.A., Brown University; Ph.D., University of Pennsylvania | email | WAC 103 | office: 363-2391
Professor Lichtenstein teaches courses on U. S. literature (personal narratives, African-American fiction, Jewish American fiction, nineteenth and twentieth-century novels by women), in Women’s and Gender Studies (Introduction to Women’s Studies, Queering Narratives), and in interdisciplinary studies (Pursuing Happiness, Crossing Borders). She has published articles on U. S. women writers as well as a book, Writing Their Nations: The Tradition of Nineteenth-Century American Jewish Women Writers (Indiana University Press). She has co-edited a special issue of Women's Studies Quarterly devoted to the relationships between women's studies and feminist activism, a cluster of essays for NWSA Journal on women’s studies’ locations. Lichtenstein also recently co-edited and co-authored a book with Professors Catherine Orr (Beloit College) and Ann Braithwaite: Rethinking Women's and Gender Studies (Routledge, 2012). She is currently working on a study of domestic efficiency in U.S. novels of the 1920s. On sabbatical 2014-15 academic year.
Cynthia McCown | Professor of English & Theatre Arts | B.A., University of North Carolina; Ph.D., Indiana University | email | WAC 107 | office: 363-2030
Professor McCown teaches literary studies, American studies, and world drama. She has published in The Eugene O'Neill Review, on the arts in America 1900-1909 in American Decades (a research encyclopedia), and on pre-depression-era American drama. She is editor of a collection of essays entitled Searching for the Magic Door: Eugene O’Neill, Domesticity and Dispossession, forthcoming from McFarland Press. Her specific interests are in twentieth-century American literature and post-colonial theatre and drama. Professor McCown is also chair of the American studies program at Beloit.
Matthew Vadnais | Assistant Professor of English | B.A., University of North Dakota; M.F.A, University of Idaho; Ph.D., The Ohio State University | email | WAC 3B 363-2319
Professor Vadnais teaches courses in Shakespeare, Renaissance literature, and creative writing and has interdisciplinary interests in performance, experimental narrative, and gender. His dissertation concerning early modern performance practices and the printed texts of William Shakespeare was a finalist for the J. Leeds Barroll dissertation prize awarded by the Shakespeare Association of America. He co-edited a critical edition of Thomas Heywood's Fayre Maide of the Exchange (the Ohio State University, forthcoming 2013) and is the author of All I Can Truly Deliver (Del Sol Press, 2005). His stories and critical essays have appeared in numerous journals and collections including FENCE, Diagram, and Shakespeare Embodied. He has worked as an actor and director for three touring Shakespeare companies.
Lisa Haines Wright | Associate Professor of English | B.A., Ohio State University; Ph.D., Indiana University | email | WAC 106 | office: 363-2448
Professor Haines Wright teaches medieval studies, eighteenth-century studies, the Gothic mode, and narrative in general, as well as critical theory, the history of English, and gender studies. Her current work locates Thomas Malory's Arthurian tales in a patriarchal tradition extending from Aristotle's Politics to the works of Freud and contemporary Freudians. Her special interest is the relation between individual consciousness and the social world as that relation is mediated by language.
Steven Wright | Adjunct Associate Professor of English | B.A., Miami University; Ph.D., Indiana University | email | MI 103 | office: 363-2385
Professor Wright teaches academic writing, expository writing, and various courses on the British literary tradition, including Detective Fiction and Sunset on the British Empire. He has published on the work of Chaucer and Chaucer's French contemporaries. Wright has also twice won Beloit College's James S. Underkofler Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching Award.
English Department and World Affairs Center (WAC) Coordinator | WAC 205-A | office: 363-2079
Tom McBride | Emeritus Professor of English | B.A., Baylor University; Ph.D., University of Illinois Urbana/Champaign
Professor McBride taught Milton, Shakespeare, and critical theory. He has team-taught a variety of interdisciplinary courses with both classicists and anthropologists. His interests in comparative discourse have most recently led him toan extensive project on Darwinian approaches to the study of literature. He has published both critical essays and creative non-fiction in journals as diverse as Texas Studies in Language and Literature, Two Cities and The Common Review . For four years, he was a popular commentator on language for Wisconsin Public Radio. On campus he is known for the twice-yearly Keefer Lectures on a variety of subjects. Recently he has authored essays for britannica.com on Raymond Carver and Allan Bloom and at opendemocracy.net on Saul Bellow and Gore Vidal. He is co-author, with Ron Nief, of a book, The Mindset Lists of American History: From Typewriters to Text Messages, What Ten Generations of Americans Think is Normal, published by Wiley Press in June 2011.
John Rosenwald | Emeritus Professor of English | B.A., University of Illiniois; Ph.D., Duke University
Professor Rosenwald has offered courses on a wide range of poets: African-American, contemporary Chinese, and Rainer Maria Rilke, as well as an advanced class on poetic technique. During four stays in China, he founded the Beloit/Fudan University Translation Workshop, a leader in providing access to contemporary Chinese poets. An editor of the Beloit Poetry Journal, he has published his own poems in numerous magazines. He has been an active member of Robert Bly's annual conference on the Great Mother and the New Father.